- Otep Shamaya - Front woman
The first release under the new alliance is OTEP’s highly anticipated fourth full-length studio album “Smash the Control Machine”. The new studio album will be released August 18, 2009. Ms. Shamaya says of the album, “The economic crisis is hitting every working family in this country. The album and its title track “Smash The Control Machine”, will lay bare the greed and corruption that fostered this calamity, but will also focus on the undying spirit of the working class that always fights the good fight. The title is a line from a William S. Burroughs poem. It is my intention to create an album that serves every head of the hydra that is OTEP. From poetry, to politics, to shock and awe, to sex and righteousness, to standing up and fighting back. Like the mystical symbol of the Ouroboros (the sacred serpent swallowing its tail) all things will be brought back to circle.”
OTEP was originally signed after only four shows, without a demo, strictly on the power of the band’s live performance. Sharon Osbourne offered the unsigned act a spot on the 2001 Ozzfest Tour leading to three appearances on the festival.
The band’s leader, Otep Shamaya, is well respected for her lyrical content and dramatic live performances. She has also published two books of poetry, spoke at the Democratic National Convention in 2008, is a gifted painter and Revolver Magazine compared OTEP to Woodie Guthrie and Zack de la Rocha (Rage Against the Machine) for her fusing of political activism and music. Some of the primary groups that she supports are RAINN, Carbon Rally, PETA and WSPA. She is also an accomplished television personality having appeared on HBO’s “Def Poetry” (twice), Bravo’s “Date My Ex” and TLC’s “L.A. Ink”.
OTEP had this to say about signing with Victory Records, “When I received the news of a possible OTEP/VICTORY alliance I could swear I felt the sky tremble. This triumvirate (of me, my manager Jack Ponti and Victory Records) is going to be a terrifying coalition for some and a righteous confederation for others. For me, this is exactly the kind of circumstance I have been waiting for. I believe my creative, intellectual and political instincts and inclinations will flourish alongside the fertile minds of Jack Ponti, Tony Brummel and the amazing staff at Victory.”
Victory Records Founder Tony Brummel said, “Signing an artist of OTEP’s caliber, intelligence, work ethic and artistic diversity sensibly expands our diverse and formidable roster. I am personally enamored by her work and believe that she has yet to realize a fraction of her potential. More importantly, her art and music have crucial meaning in a time when people need change, hope and something to believe in. We have the tools, she has the material and together we will build a culturally formidable fortress.”
Manager Jack Ponti had this to add, “It both thrills and honors me to be working with OTEP and Victory Records. In my thirty years in this business, it’s always been about the proper “marriage”. I cannot convey how excited I am about the possibilities of these daunting forces joining together in what promises to be a thunderous union.”
In addition to lending her support to numerous groups and causes (some being the genocide in Darfur, Women’s and artists’ rights, Marriage Equality, the war in the Congo and support of President Obama), Ms. Shamaya, an accomplished, captivating and astute technophile, has started the social networks “All Shapes and Sizes”, along with “Girls Out Now”. On December 21, 2008 she created a popular and highly trafficked blog entitled, “I’m Not A Monster”. The site was an instant success and a reliable source for current events and her latest musings. Her loyal and passionate fan bases are active followers of her frequent Facebook and Twitter postings. Coupled with Victory’s proprietary marketing and promotional platforms (VicTorV, VictorStream, VictoryMetal and VictorME) a truly interactive and real-time artist/fan/label fusion has been realized for selling music in 2009.
Due to an overwhelming demand, OTEP released her very first live album, Sounds Like Armageddon, on November 6th, 2012. Dedication to her diehard “tribe” meant for that they were now able to share their profoundly dynamic live show with fans that hadn’t experienced one yet. Combining hit singles spanning her entire career, the band concerned themselves with providing a piece for all members of the tribe, new and old. Known for her aggressively chilling vocals and knack for powerful storytelling, Sounds Like Armageddon transports OTEP into your living room with thousands of screaming fans.
Not one to take a break, OTEP will be presenting her latest project Hydra, to the tribe January 22, 2013. With no hesitation, critics are expecting the album to deliver the hyper-intellectual lyricism the band has administered for years, but true to OTEP fashion, showcase growth and experience in new ways. For fans of no-nonsense, truly important metal, Hydra will be at the top of your Best of 2013 list. Meant to motivate and mobilize, the tribe is in store for some very unforgiving new material from one of the most raw, outspoken women of the 21st century. To the delight of the tribe members down under, OTEP will be headlining the ‘Sounds Like Armageddon 2013 Australian Tour’, supported by DARKC3LL and RECOIL VOR, promising some of OTEPs most impressive live performances to date.
In closing OTEP wanted to add the following quote from Sylvia Plath: "I don't believe that the meek will inherit the earth: the meek get ignored and trampled. They decompose in the bloody soil of war, of business, of art, and they rot into the warm ground under the spring rains. It is the bold, the loud-mouthed, the cruel, the vital, the revolutionaries, the might in arms and will, who march over the soft patient flesh that lies beneath their cleated boots."
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